Missouri 9, Robert Morris 0

May 21, 2005

Columbia, Mo. - The No. 16 Missouri softball team (43-14) stayed alive at the NCAA Softball Regional tournament, shutting out Robert Morris, 9-0, in five innings of game four at University Field. Two Tigers homered and three combined for Missouri's fourth no-hitter of the season to advance to tonight's 7 p.m. (CT) game against Southern Illinois (47-13).

Batting from the three-hole, redshirt freshman Micaela Minner (Sanger, Texas) took the first pitch off of Robert Morris starter Erica Riggle for a ride over the centerfield fence in the top of the first inning. A two-out shot, the knock was her 16th of the season and ties former Tiger standout Mary Babb's 1997 record for most MU home runs on a season.

Not to be outdone, freshman designated player Jen Bruck (St. Peters, Mo.) came through with her 16th blast of the campaign in the top of the third inning. A one out, three-run crush, Bruck lifted he Tigers to a nine run lead and joined Minner and Babb at the No. 1 spot on the MU season home run record book.

The Tigers connected on seven hits in five innings, scoring five of their runs in the top of the second. Senior shortstop Heather Kunkel (Oak Forrest, Ill.) led off with a single up the middle and stole second for her seventh successful swipe of the season. St Louis, Mo., native Kathy Masterson was next at bat for the Tigers, drawing four balls off of Riggle to reach first. With junior third baseman Kendra Power (Kansas City, Mo.) at the plate, MU Head Coach Ty Singleton signaled for a double steal, sending his base runners to second and third. In the very next play, Kunkel ran home on a ground out by Power and Masterson was close behind crossing home plate on Riggle's ninth wild pitch of the season. Missouri's second out of the inning was a ground out that returned the Tigers to the top of the order. Of the next seven at bats, three Tigers swatted singles and the Colonials sent in pitcher Danielle Cohen to try and contain MU's slug fest. Only after walking in the fifth run did Cohen force the final out to send the game to the bottom of the second.

Senior ace Erin Kalka (Chandler, Okla.) made her second start of the NCAA tournament in the circle. Twirling only one complete inning, Kalka held the Colonials hitless and was relieved by sophomore southpaw Erica Peterson (Irving, Texas). Bruck entered the game in the final inning and combined with Kalka and Peterson for MU's fourth no-hitter of the season and first of the Columbia, Mo., tournament. Together the staff fanned eight batters and Peterson (18-13) was credited with the victory.

-- Courtesy Missouri